Sustainability in the Corporate World
California Polytechnic State University
27 January 2006
How Can We “Profit” from Sustainability??
Balancing economic, social and environmental opportunities
J. Alexander Sloan
My background and perspective
Shifting consumer attitudes and demands
“Sustainability” and a useful framework
Pulling companies to sustainability
Opportunities in under-developed markets
My Experience and Perspective
1992 - 1993: U.S. Agency for International Development
1993 - 1996: The Vietnam Fund Limited
1996 - 1998: Cornell MBA
1999 - 2002: Hambrecht & Quist venture capital unit
Merged into J.P. Morgan Partners
Invested in many younger private technology companies
2004 on: Founding Partner, Blackwolf Partners
Early stage venture fund focus on Cleantech: healthier, cleaner,
more energy efficient products & services.
Board Member, Center for Sustainable Global Enterprise at Cornell U.
Let’s Take a Quick Poll
expect your career to take place in or be focused on developing countries?
expect your career to be primarily in an NGO, government, public sector,
university, or research organization?
want your career to have a direct positive effect on environmental and/or
social issues (health/wellness, poverty, expanded access to opportunities, etc.)?
think that a profit can be made by working on environmental and social issues?
think that a profit should be made by working on environmental and social issues?
How many of you…
expect your career to be involved directly with developing new technologies?
Where is the Demand?
Consumers are increasingly sophisticated and aware of
what they are buying.
1. Their own time and money,
2. Product performance,
3. Values: growing importance of “health and wellbeing” (of self,
family, community, nation, planet).
Strong demand recently for organic and natural foods,
healthy/sports drinks, hybrid cars, alternative energy, holistic an